Granite Countertops All Granite and Marble Corporate


Encyclopedy Index

Corian is a solid surface material composed of acrylic polymer and alumina trihydrate made by DuPont. It is said to be a thermosetting plastic, but can be thermoformed by heating it to 300°F, allowing unique shapes to be created. Its primary use is for countertops. Corian is available in thicknesses of one-quarter, one-half and three-quarters of an inch, with half-inch being the most common thickness for most applications. All thicknesses feature the consistency of color and patterning throughout common to all brands of solid surfacing material . This allows scratches, stains and light scorches to be removed with sandpaper. Joints can be made invisible by joining them with a special seam adhesive and sanding the connection smooth. The disadvantages of Corian are that it scratches easily, can be damaged by chemicals and is not heat resistant, so it can be melted by hot pots and pans. Corian is far more expensive than laminate and butcher block countertops and significantly more expensive than tile, but is less expensive than high quality granite.

Direct competition

Meganite solid surface, one of the newest brands on the market, has 80 close replicated color matches equivalent to Corian, but at a significantly lower price. The LG Group and the Formica Corporation both manufacture competing solid surface acrylic countertopping in similar styles and at similar price points as Corian. LG market their solid surface acylic under the Hi-Macs brand name. Samsung's Staron solid surface is also on the rise in the competition. Wilsonart has their Gibraltar solid surface. A more expensive, different approach to the countertop industry is Avonite. Avonite is a solid surface, but made primarily from a polyester base, not an acrylic one.

The main advantage corian has over these materials is a higher sheer strength. Sudden jolts or impacts will rarely damage corian severely; however, other solid surface materials are much weaker and more rigid. In particular, Avonite and Hi-Macs solid surface materials are extremely sensitive, and will break or shatter under stress that would only scratch or chip corian.

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